This paper discusses the experience and lessons learned during three years of electrical submersible pump (ESP) operation in heavy and viscous oil in the Peregrino field. Artificial lift applications on heavy oil fields have been a challenge for operators, and the Peregrino field is a good example for this type of ESP application.

An ESP was designed to enable a wide operation window to fulfill reservoir conditions changes and to focus on the extended run life and overall lifting efficiency. Three different ESP configurations were applied to produce liquid rates from 1500 to 20000 STB/d utilizing 1100-HP and 540-HP motors. Upper completions using a packer and capsule solution were selected to comply with all production conditions.

Peregrino field is a Statoil asset located in Campos Basin, approximately 85 km offshore from Cabo Frio/Rio de Janeiro state in Brazil. The oil in Peregrino has viscosity between 129 cp to 364 cp, and the API gravity varies between 13° and 15° API. The first phase of field development comprised two drilling-capable wellhead platforms and a centrally moored FPSO. Currently, there are 27 producer wells, including 3 multilaterals and 6 injectors in operation. The field is currently producing close to 100,000 STB/d of oil and has achieved a production record of 104,292 STB/d in July 2013.

The learning and experience developed from the ESP design phase through three years of operation represents a very important set of best practices. This information can be used by the industry as a complete field-proven method of ESP project implementation, particularly when dealing with high flow rates, high horsepower, and viscous oil ESP operations in an offshore environment.

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